(Available in Dimensions Analytics and Dimensions Plus)

Dimensions offers the option to search for documents that are similar to an abstract or other longer piece of text (formerly called "abstract search"). Dimensions extracts relevant concepts from the text and returns the most similar documents. The Similar Documents search is available for all content types.

To search by Similar Documents:

  1. Click in the right side of the search box and select Similar Documents
  2. Paste an abstract or other longer piece of text into the search box.
  3. Press enter on your device.

Abstracts of methods papers or highly technical wording will likely return a smaller number of results highly related in scope to the entered abstract. Using a review paper abstract or less technical piece of text will likely return a greater number of more general results.

This type of search can be useful when trying to identify publications or grant funding based on a specific topic that would otherwise be hard to define through complex keyword searches alone.

Text used in the Similar Documents search remains private to you and is neither uploaded nor stored in any way in the Dimensions database.

Changing the number of results and applying filters

The Similar Documents search relies on complex weighted combinations of automatically identified noun phrases to identify highly similar documents, and due to the complex processing required, the number of results shown is limited.

By default, Dimensions returns up to 500 most similar documents. You can change this threshold manually to 1,000 or 2,000 documents using the dropdown at the top of the search results list. When applying additional filters, such as a research organization or a year range, Dimensions will recalculate the results and return a new set of similar documents up to the selected threshold -- but this time within the body of documents meeting the criteria of the search and applied filters.